Meet Your Newest 76er, Charles Jenkins

Meet Your Newest 76er, Charles Jenkins

A tradition old as time: The Sixers pulling up at the trade deadline,
making only the crappiest, lowest-leverage deals possible. In the last
five years, the most consequential trade-deadline deal the Sixers made
was sending a second-round pick to Milwaukee for shooting guard Jodie
Meeks (a second-round rookie himself) back in 2009, a trade that at
least netted us a legitimate rotation player (if not a particularly
high-upside one) for the next couple seasons after. We can only hope
that the deal the Sixers made today—sending a second-rounder to Golden
State for combo guard Charles Jenkins—reaches a similar level of impact.

So who is Charles Jenkins? If you're anything but the most die-hard
of NBA or college ball followers, chances are pretty good you've never
heard of the guy. He enjoyed a very successful four-year career at NCAA
powerhouse Hofstra, averaging 22 and 5 his senior year, on impressive
52% shooting—albeit mostly against Colonial Athletic Association
competition. He was taken in the second round with the 44th pick by the
Golden State Warriors, and he got a fair bit of playing time last year
with the team in full-on tank mode, averaging 5.8 points and 3.3 dimes a
game in under 18 minutes of action.

Decent numbers, but with the Warriors an actual playoff contender
this year, and the Warriors boasting one of the league's best backcourt
trio's in Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Jarrett Jack, Jenkins'
numbers sagged considerably this year, down to just 1.7 points and 0.6
assists a game on 42% shooting, in just under seven minutes a game.
Without a real role on the Golden State team and with the Warriors
looking to shed salary to stay under the luxury tax, they deemed Jenkins
expendable and shipped him to the Sixers. (Sam Amick tweets
that the Warriors won't likely ever even see a pick from the Sixers,
though what exactly that means is beyond my level of CBA expertise.)

On this Philly team, it's unclear what role Jenkins will have. He'll
likely push Royal Ivey for some backup guard minutes, but with Jeremy
Pargo signed for the rest of the season, he probably won't play much as
the team's primary backup point. He's more insurance against injuries to
Jrue and Evan, perhaps, but it's hard to see him really making much of
an impact in a fully-healthy Philly backcourt. All that said, my friend
Rich (a native Long Islander and Hofstra supporter) insists he could be a

Rich:  Jenkins may surpriseif you are expecting him to be awful
he'll be better than thatRich:  for the record, I am not being sarcastic
Andrew, Ads and I were in attendance when he broke the Hofstra scoring recordSpeedy Claxton was sitting courtsideit was star-studded

So there's that, at least. Besides, he's cheap, he's 23, he's got two working legs. Anything can happen.

as usual, the story isn't what the Sixers did at the trade deadline,
but more of what they didn't do: Namely, that they didn't deal
third-year frustration Evan Turner, who was very possibly being dangled
in front of the Orlando Magic in exchange for their shooting guard JJ
Redick. Ultimately, I'm glad no such deal went down—aside from my
personal attachment to ET, he's still a much higher-upside player than
the consistent shooter Redick, who would be a huge asset on a contending
team (too bad he got traded to the middling Bucks), but who would be
too expensive for a rebuilding team, as the Sixers may be the next year
or so. Still, the front office loves Redick, and if things are looking
good for the Sixers at the beginning of the next off-season—big
if—expect GM Tony DiLeo to make a push for him in free agency.

Anyway, looks like this is our team for the rest of the season. It
sucks, but at least there's still minor hope for the future, and at
least it'll be over before too long. Take solace in the little things.

Embiid and Okafor want to play together, but not just yet, says Brown

Embiid and Okafor want to play together, but not just yet, says Brown

CAMDEN, N.J. — If all goes as planned, a time will come when the Sixers can roll out a dominating frontcourt duo with Joel Embiid and Jahlil Okafor sharing the court in lengthy stretches.

That moment has to wait, though, as both Embiid and Okafor are on minute restrictions. As he returns from a knee injury, Okafor currently is coming off the bench and backing up Embiid.

“This conversation with Jahlil and Joel is more intelligent and applicable at a later date,” Brett Brown said at practice Friday. “When Jahlil’s minutes start going up and Joel can, then it’s a real conversation. I do think you may see them sooner than even I thought together. But as far as making it a real constant part of a strategy or rotation, it’s beyond too early days.”

In an ideal world, Brown could pair the two bigs now and use all of their allotted minutes (Embiid 20, Okafor 14) at once. That would leave an extensive workload on second-year bench player Richaun Holmes.

“This is a hot topic,” Brown said. “I will say it one more time: If I play Jahlil and Jo together, I hope Richaun can play 35 minutes.”

It’s an unrealistic expectation for Holmes, who averaged 13.8 minutes in 51 games last season. Brown caps the majority of the Sixers at six-minute segments to keep them competing at a high energy level.

“Right now, he’s a backup,” Brown said of Holmes. “I think he’s going to be an NBA player for a very long time. I just feel like in the role, he’s a second-year player that didn’t really have much of a role last year. He’s shown everybody that he’s for real. He really can play a role. At this early stage, that is the key word.”

Embiid and Okafor have been envisioning competing together since Okafor was drafted two years ago. They became friends long before they were NBA players and have an easy chemistry on the court as a result.

“I think it’s going to be exciting,” Embiid said. “We played a little bit together today in practice. We’re figuring out how to play with each other. It’s a process and we’ve got trust it.”

Yes, the players know they have to wait, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy for them to resist an opportunity to play with one another.  

“I think once we figure it out, we can really dominate together,” Okafor said. “We were able to flirt with it again today. We accidentally keep ending up on the same team even though Coach keeps telling us to make sure we alternate. But we’re having fun. We’re trying to put some pressure on it because we want to play together.”

Is that accidentally with air quotes?

“Yeah, exactly,” Okafor said with a laugh.

'Trust the process' has a different, more personal meaning to Joel Embiid

'Trust the process' has a different, more personal meaning to Joel Embiid

CAMDEN, N.J. — Joel Embiid is all about trusting the process.

He manages to insert the well-known phrase into just about every interview, hashtags it on social media and soaks in the chants during games. 

While “trust the process” is commonly associated with former Sixers general manager Sam Hinkie’s patience-required approach to building the team — which resulted in three years of dismal losing and suffering setback after setback — Embiid has his personal take on the mantra.

“I think I have my own process,” Embiid said Friday at practice.

Embiid is playing for the first time this season after waiting two years to recover from foot injuries. His long-anticipated debut was a focal point of “the process,” and his return to the court marked a new chapter in the organization.

“I went through two surgeries, lost my brother, thought about some stuff I shouldn’t have thought about, so that’s my own process,” he said. “And then the process of going through the rehab and finally getting back on the court and getting the chance to finally play in the league, that’s my process.”

Embiid is now synonymous with the word. He credits Sixers fans for the moniker, which he added to his Instagram profile. 

“I don’t think it came from me,” he said. “Fans just started and then I just went along with it.”

Wednesday marked the next step in the process, both for the Sixers and Embiid. His regular-season debut (20 points, seven rebounds, two blocks) was a long time coming and garnered buzz all over the NBA world.

“I was the third pick and then I missed two years,” Embiid said. “The excitement in the city, everybody’s happy to finally see me play. Even though it was weird because a lot of people kind of wrote me off a long time ago saying that I’d never play as a Sixer, I’d never play in the league. So it’s all fun. Everybody’s going to have an opinion.”

He’s just got to trust in his own.